EUGÉNIE, de Montijo, Impératrice (1826-1920)

Autograph letter signed « Eugénie » to French Republic president Patrice de Mac-Mahon
Chislehurst, Camden Place [June 1873], 4 p. in-8

“I am not asking you anything for the future but to respect a past that was the cradle of your glory”

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EUGÉNIE, de Montijo, Impératrice (1826-1920)

Autograph letter signed « Eugénie » to French Republic president Patrice de Mac-Mahon
Chislehurst, Camden Place [June 1873], 4 p. in-8

With a very cursive writing, the Empress defends with rage the memory of emperor Napoleon III and apostrophes vividly the new President of the Republic.
The Empire speaks here to the Republic with excess and resentment.


« Monsieur le Marechal
Je vois dans les journaux depuis quelques jours des anecdotes qui ont l’intention de vous exalter au détriment de celui qui n’est plus, de celui qui vous fit en un jour maréchal et Duc ; je ne puis croire que votre cœur ne se révolte de ces flatteries qui se prodiguent à tout pouvoir, à tout succès.
Je suis la veuve de Napoléon III
Sa gloire et son honneur sont à mes yeux plus qu’une couronne, plus que la fortune. Faites taire ce qui vous font un piédestal sur une tombe, et songez qu’il n’y a de grandeur que ce qui à sa base sur la justice. Je ne vous demande rien pour l’avenir mais faites respecter un passé qui fut le berceau de votre gloire. Croyez monsieur le Maréchal à tous mes sentiments. Eugénie »


Marshal macMahon, newly elected President of the Republic (May 24, 1873), had been glorified in the press during his election, in particular because of his military successes under the Second Empire, which earned him the duke of Magenta and marshal of France during the Italian War (1859). These two titles were conferred on him by Napoleon III, general in chief of the Army of Italy, at the end of the victory won at Magenta (June 4, 1859) by the then General de Mac-Mahon.

Attached to this letter is the press article that raised the indignation of Empress Eugenie at the silence and the obvious lack of recognition regarding the intervention of the Emperor in the elevation of the Marshal-Duke. The document bears the handwritten mention “6 June”, probably inscribed by the latter, and probably corresponds to its date of publication in the press.

 

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